Thursday, October 7, 2010

Chocolate Pound Cake

Before discovering the wonderfully moist and delicious pound cake, I thought about making a chocolate pound cake.  Since I don’t normally like regular pound cake, I thought chocolate might make a pound cake more likeable, because everything tastes better with chocolate doesn’t it?

I chose a recipe found on The Little Teochew.  The cake came out great. It had a surprisingly deep chocolate flavor just from using the dutch processed cocoa. This is definitely a cake I’d make again. I made a couple of modifications to the recipe I found. The modified recipe is below:

Chocolate Sour Cream Pound Cake (adapted from recipe found on The Little Teochew)

Ingredients

1 1/2 cups all-purpose flour
1/2 cup cake flour
1 cup Dutch-processed cocoa powder
2 1/4  tsp baking powder
1/2 tsp salt
1 1/2 cups unsalted butter, softened
2 cups granulated sugar
4 large eggs
2 tsp vanilla extract
1 cup sour cream

Directions

1. Position a rack in the center of the oven and preheat the oven to 325 F. Grease the inside of a 10-inch Bundt pan with baking spray that contains flour.

2. In a large bowl, whisk the flours, cocoa powder, baking powder, and salt.

3. In a bowl of an electric mixer, using the paddle attachment, beat the butter (make sure butter is softened in microwave first) at medium speed. Gradually beat in the sugar, until light and creamy. At medium speed, beat in the eggs one at a time, mixing well after each addition.

4. In a small bowl, stir the vanilla extract into the sour cream. At the low speed, add the dry ingredients to the butter mixture in 3 additions, alternating with the sour cream mixture in 2 additions and mixing just until blended.

5. Bake the cake for 65 to 75 minutes, until a flat knife  inserted into the center comes out clean. Cool the cake in the pan on a wire rack for 15 minutes. Then invert the cake onto the rack and let it cool completely.

Wednesday, October 6, 2010

Tofu King, Yi Mei, Golden China

On my last trip to Rowland Heights, we were just supposed to swing by and get some shaved ice and some fried stinky (fermented) tofu to go. But who am I fooling? As soon I arrived, I didn't want to leave. So many restaurants to check out. BF was willing to stop by places with me, but he didn't want to sit down and eat at them because he wasn't hungry.

Tofu King
18414 Colima Rd
Rowland Heights, CA 91748
(626) 964-6250

So I ended up stopping by a few places to get things to go. First, we went to Tofu King again to get some stinky tofu. Once there, I felt like I had transported to an alley in Taiwan. The small storefront, the man taking orders, the outside seating, everything reminded me of Taiwan.

We ordered the fried stinky tofu. You can read a more in depth post on Tofu King here, where I explain a little more about this famous street food and the restaurant.

I also wanted to explore some more menu items, so I ordered a meat noodle stew.  This is another common street food item. Noodles, chunks of meat paste, and bamboo are served in a thick, starchy broth. 

The version here was similar to ones I've eaten in Taiwan. It didn't really stand out, but it wasn't bad either.

Yi Mei Deli
18414 Colima Rd
Rowland Heights, CA 91748

After we walked away from Tofu King, I noticed Yi Mei Deli nearby. This place sounded really familiar to me, but I couldn't remember why. Once inside, I saw that they had a whole menu of breakfast items that they were still serving. I suddenly remembered why this place was so familiar- I had visited its sister location in Monterey Park.

Once inside, I couldn't help but get some fresh made soy milk that was served warm. I also got a rice roll. I didn't particularly like the rice roll. The inside fried crueller was stale tasting. I hadn't particularly loved the location in Monterey Park, and my experience here wasn't much better.

Golden China
1015 Nogales St Ste 129
Rowland Heights, CA 91748

My last stop before Class 302 was Golden China, located inside the Ranch 99. I had heard of this place from gastronomer. I explored the menu and really wanted to sit down and try some of the spicy dishes, but BF wasn't budging.

So I ended up order stuff to go and opted not to try to take the spicy dishes home. Instead, I ordered some shrimp fried rice.

The portion was generous and there were lots of shrimp. It was a little on the bland side, but I enjoyed it. The price was pretty reasonable too.

I also got some chive pockets. My order came with two giant chive pockets. The skin was pan fried but very crispy, which is how I like it. The inside chive filling had a great flavor. I was surprised at how tasty these were and would order them again. I'll have to come back here for a proper meal next time.

 

Wednesday, October 6, 2010

Moist, Delicious Sour Cream Pound Cake

I love this pound cake. I mentioned in my marble matcha tea cake post that I had a lot of sour cream to use up. When I think of baking with sour cream, I always think of pound cakes, which require a lot of sour cream. The only thing is, I don’t like pound cake. That is, until now.

I have a serious sweet tooth, but pound cake and I have never gotten along. I look at the cake and it looks so pretty and I take a bite, and then I’m immediately put off by the extremely dense texture. If you enjoy browsing sites like foodgawker, you may have seen a beautiful sour cream bundt cake image submitted by Sweet Kat’s Kitchen.  Her bundt cake looked so lovely and simple, I couldn’t stop thinking about it. She claimed it was the best sour cream pound cake, and even though I usually hate pound cakes, I found myself wanting to make this.

When I eyed in the ingredients, I noticed that it called for half the flour to be cake flour. This looked promising. Cake flour cakes are usually lighter and fluffier, so perhaps this cake wouldn’t be as dense. The other thing that drew me to this cake was the tiny bit of honey. I’ve been obsessed with honey flavored desserts for a while now, ever since experiencing honey lavendar ice cream.

The cake came out as wonderful as promised. The cake looks dense, but also manages to be super moist and the cake flour keeps it from being too dense. The hint of honey adds a wonderful flavor to this cake.  This is now one of my favorite recipes and definitely is going to be my go-to recipe for sour cream pound cake. The only change I would make to this recipe is the amount of sugar. I thought the cake was a tad too sweet, so next time I would reduce the sugar amount on this cake.

Sour Cream Bundt Cake (recipe from Sweet Kat’s Kitchen)